East Hawaii News

No Tsunami from 7.4-Magnitude Quake Near Tonga

May 23, 2013, 9:13 AM HST
* Updated May 23, 12:16 PM
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A powerful earthquake that stuck south of Tonga and Fiji this morning did not generate a Pacific-wide tsunami, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said.

The convergence of tectonic plates is shown in this USGS image (click to enlarge).

The convergence of tectonic plates is shown in this USGS image (click to enlarge).

The 7.4-magnitude tremor that occurred at 7:19 a.m., Hawaii time, was centered 175 miles southwest of Vaini, Tonga, and 442 miles southeast of Suva, Fiji.

The US Geological Survey said it occurred at a depth of 106 miles at a highly unstable seismic region where the eastern margin of the Australia plate is converging with Pacific plates.

It was followed at 11:08 a.m., Hawaii time, by an aftershock with a magnitude of 6.6.

Since 1900, there have been 15 earthquakes of 7.5 magnitude or greater recorded near New Zealand to the south, the USGS said.

***Updated at 11:40 a.m.***

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